U.S. air travelers will feel budget cut effects quickly: union

WASHINGTON Fri Feb 22, 2013 1:26pm EST

A traveller walks to his flight at Ronald Reagan National Airport as the sun rises in Washington, September 24, 2008. REUTERS/Jason Reed

A traveller walks to his flight at Ronald Reagan National Airport as the sun rises in Washington, September 24, 2008.

Credit: Reuters/Jason Reed

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. air travelers will face increased delays and potentially higher prices if cuts to the U.S. Transportation Department's budget go into effect on March 1 as part of planned across-the-board government reductions, the National Air Traffic Controllers Association said on Friday.

"Travelers and users of the National Airspace System, from commercial passengers to businesses of all sizes to the military, will feel the impact of the cuts throughout the spring and summer," the union said in statement.

It followed a White House briefing in which U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood warned of widespread disruption to the U.S. air travel system if the automatic spending cuts take effect.

(Reporting By Doug Palmer; Editing by Vicki Allen)

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